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News

iPod Fashion Contest - One Day Left, Four iPhones

Competition is heating up in our iPod Fashion Photo Contest — and there’s only one day left to submit your entry. At stake are four Apple iPhones, and $200 in iTunes Gift Cards, so don’t miss the deadline! Here’s a few entries we’ve already received:

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Dress Yourself

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Dress Your iPod

Official rules and more samples can be found here. Entries are due by the end of the day on May 20, 2007, and winners will be announced on June 1 inside The Free iPod Book 3. Good luck, and show your creativity!

Griffin iTrip Pocket FM transmitter now shipping

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Griffin Technology has announced that its iTrip Pocket FM transmitter is now shipping. The small device, designed to fit the bottom of the second-generation iPod nano, features a forward-backward frequency button, three buttons for user-defined preset stations, and a small plastic cover to protect the Dock Connector when not in use. It also makes use of SmartDisplay Technology to show frequency information directly on the screen of the iPod. The iTrip Pocket is compatible with fourth- and fifth-generation iPods and first-generation iPod nanos, and sells for $50. Learn more about the iTrip Pocket in our First Look article.

iStyles debuts 2007 Sleeve collection

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iStyles has announced the immediate availability of its 2007 Sleeve collection. The sleeves, available in a variety of exotic materials and styles such as Pebbles, Crumpy Red, and Princess Sparkle, feature micro-fiber lining for protection, and a multi-functional slit pocket that can be used to store small accessories such as earphones. The Sleeves are available for full-sized iPods, iPod nano, and iPod shuffle, as well as for the iPhone and the Palm Treo. They sell for $10.

Forums: Cover songs, Compilations, iPhone abroad, Earphones

Over in our Music forum, iLounger Chricton asks what are the Best and Worst Cover Songs of all time, with some members discovering songs they already knew were actually covers of previously recorded tracks. Make your opinion heard in the thread.

In our fifth-generation iPod forum, the Setting Up Compilations thread offers a wealth of suggestions and tips on how to keep your compilation albums in order, both in iTunes and on your iPod.

Planning on getting an iPhone but don’t live in the US? Check out the ongoing discussion in the iPhone forum about buying the device abroad — options range from getting on a plane, to buying on eBay, to waiting for the European version.

iLounge reader Marcos asks for your suggestions for non-isolating earphones with good bass over in our Ear/Headphones forum. Several readers have already begun making suggestions.

TBWA to handle iPhone advertising

Following their success with the “Hello” commercial that aired during this year’s Academy Awards, TBWA/Chiat/Day will handle all advertising duties for the iPhone. According to an Advertising Age report (free subscription required), the firm beat out sibling agency BBDO — AT&T’s agency of record — for the account. Discussions on whether or not BBDO will provide support advertising are still ongoing. TBWA’s Media Arts Lab has handled creative duties for Apple since 1997.

New iPodweek coming later today

This week’s edition of iLounge’s weekly newsletter, iPodweek, will be available later today. iPodweek is a weekly summary of the best iPod news, reviews, and feature articles we’ve published, and it also features iPod accessory discount offers from various companies and retailers. There is still plenty of time to sign up for this week’s edition, if you haven’t done so already — just use the simple form below to submit your email address.

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iPhone receives FCC approval

Apple’s iPhone has received certification from the Federal Communications Commission. The application documents, made public by the FCC, include very little new information. An official Apple communication, found online with the other documents, showed the company requested items such as test setup, external, and internal photographs, as well as the User Manual to be withheld “from public viewing for forty-five days after the date certification is granted. [Today, meaning that the documents will be available July 1, presumably after the iPhone’s debut.]” The documents also revealed that the device is Apple Model No. A1203 and it received the FCC ID BCGA1203. In his January keynote address, Steve Jobs said, “We’re announcing [iPhone] today because we have to go get FCC approval. We thought it would be better to introduce this today rather than let the FCC introduce it.”

Mix: UK shuffle, turbo.264, iRepair, Museum

  • May 17, 2007

The iPod shuffle has seen a price drop in the UK, from £55 to £49 (approx. $97). This follows an April drop in the price of fifth-generations iPods, when the 30GB model was cut £10 while the 80GB went from £259 to £239 (approx. $472).

Previously mentioned on iLounge, Elgato’s Turbo.264 H.264 video encoder is now available for $100. The USB 2.0 device accelerates video exports to iPod and Apple TV formats from any application that uses Quicktime export.

iPod repair service iRepair.ca has launched a US-based service and is offering 24-hour turn around iPod repair service for all models.

According to a UK survey, the iPod was the universal favored choice as an everyday object that belongs in a museum.

Shades iPod cases now available

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ShadesCases has announced the release of its new line of Shades iPod Cases. The cases, which measure only .4mm thick and offer protection for both the screen and Click Wheel, are made from polyurethane and are come in nine different colors (seven for the second-generation iPod nano), including Cool Blue, Aqua, Rosy Red, Sunrise Orange, Violet, Serene Green, Hot Pink, Clear, and Midnight Black. Cases are available now for the first- and second-generation iPod nano, and fourth- and fifth generation iPods. Pricing is $16 for full-sized Shades iPod cases, $13 for iPod nano cases.

Coke to give away 2 billion iTunes downloads in Europe

Coca-Cola has teamed up with Apple to give away 2 billion songs as part of a large promotional campaign in Europe. Spanning 17 European countries and running from May until the end of August, the promotion will also offer chances to win free iPods and attend some of the 100-plus Coke and iTunes sponsored summer concerts across Europe. Free song downloads and other prizes can be won inside specially marked bottles of Coca-Cola, Diet Coke and Coke Zero. Coke said the promotion will be launched at the Cannes Film Festival with a special live performance from Faithless, who have recorded an exclusive track for Coke and iTunes.

Memorex launches four iPod speaker systems

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Memorex has introduced four new speaker systems for the iPod. The systems, all of which feature a line-in jack and integrated Universal iPod Dock, include the Mi1003 speaker system for iPod, the Mi1112 2CD home speaker system for iPod, the Mi3000 iTrek portable speaker for iPod, and the Mi3001 iTrek portable speaker for iPod.

imageThe Mi1003 is a small, circular speaker that features four neodymium speakers, a line-out jack, S-Video out, a subwoofer out jack, and a wireless remote control. It sells for $70. The Mi1112 packs dual front-loading CD players into its design, which also features a blue, backlit LCD display, a digital AM/FM radio, a wireless remote, and 25 watts of power.

imageThe Mi3000 and Mi3001 are feature-identical, save for the Mi3000’s protective carrying case, which the Mi3001 lacks. Otherwise their features include a digital FM tuner, wireless remote, up to 15 hours of battery life from 6 “AA” batteries, headphone jack, and a recessed, protective compartment for the iPod. In addition, Memorex added two new colors, Blue and Pink, to its Mi3005 iMove line of iPod boomboxes. The Mi3000 is available now in limited release, with the rest of the lineup “coming soon.” Pricing for the Mi1112, Mi3000, and Mi3001 has yet to be determined.

iHome offers iH80 iPod speaker system

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iHome has introduced its iH80 iHome 2Go speaker system for iPod. The square-shaped system features an integrated Universal Dock, a remote with full iPod navigation control, and a speaker out jack for connecting an optional matching speaker for stereo sound. Other features include a line-in port for connecting other audio sources, AV out for displaying pictures and video, Reson8 speaker technology, and a microphone-in jack with mic level control. The iH80 can operate on the included AC adaptor or 8 “C” batteries. It can be found in stores and sells for $100.

Amazon to launch DRM-free music service

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Amazon has announced that it will launch a DRM-free digital music store later this year. The store will offer “millions of songs,” from more than 12,000 record labels, all in DRM-free MP3 format. The store will include EMI Music’s catalog. “Our MP3-only strategy means all the music that customers buy on Amazon is always DRM-free and plays on any device,” Jeff Bezos, Amazon.com founder and CEO, said. “We’re excited to have EMI joining us in this effort and look forward to offering our customers MP3s from amazing artists like Coldplay, Norah Jones and Joss Stone.” EMI CEO Eric Nicoli added, “They [Amazon.com] have been an important retail partner of ours, and we are delighted they will be offering consumers EMI’s new premium DRM-free downloads in their new digital music store.” Further details such as launch date and pricing were not available.

Apple airs new iPod+iTunes TV ad

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Apple has begun airing yet another new iPod+iTunes television commercial. Like previous ads, the new 30-second spot continues the company’s silhouetted dancers theme. The new ad features the song “Mi Swing Es Tropical” by Nickodemus & Quantic featuring Tempo.

DLO unveils HomeDock Music Remote

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Digital Lifestyle Outfitters has unveiled the HomeDock Music Remote, a new addition to its line of HomeDock iPod accessories. The HomeDock Music Remote includes a slim remote with an OLED display that allows users to navigate the iPod’s menus from the remote. The remote also uses RF signals, which work through walls and ceilings, within a range of 150 feet. The system includes audio cables for connecting the dock to a stereo or home theater, and it is compatible with all Dock Connecting iPods. The DLO HomeDock Music Remote is available now for $130.

ezGear intros three iPhone cases

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ezGear has announced three silicone ezSkin cases for Apple’s iPhone. The cases, which will come with an adhesive screen protector, include the ezSkin for iPhone, ezSkin Bumperz for iPhone, and the ezSkin Xtreme for iPhone. The ezSkin is a slim-fitting case with removable belt holster. The ezSkin Bumperz wraps around the perimeter of the iPhone providing protection for the edge and all four corners of the device. The ezSkin Xtreme offers extra thick corners and sides to provide better shock and drop protection. The iPhone cases will be available in June. Pricing was not available.

Body Glove debuts iPod Case with Kickstand

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Body Glove Technology Accessories has introduced its new iPod Case with Kickstand for fifth-generation iPods. The case features a kickstand built into a belt clip for easy attachment; the clip and stand, as well as the knob to which they connect, are removable. The accessory is made of Body Glove’s Ion material, a water-resistant synthetic fabric that gives a “glove-like” fit, and openings allow access to the headphone port and Dock Connector, the hold switch, and Click Wheel. The Body Glove iPod Case with Kickstand is designed to fit 30, 60, and 80GB fifth-generation iPods, and is available at Wal-Mart for $20.

Mix: Zune 2.0, iPod sales, Scroll Wheel, MySpace

  • May 15, 2007

Microsoft has announced plans to build a new plant in China which will manufacture the second-generation Zune. In the announcement, Jason Reindorp, marketing director for Zune, revealed that the next iteration of the device includes a number of different versions with varying prices and storage capacities.

Retail numbers gathered by the NPD Group show that retail sales of iPods were down in March, with the player’s market share dropping below 70 percent.

A new Microsoft business telephone prototype, shown at the Windows Hardware and Engineering Conference, sports an iPod-like scroll wheel, which is used for navigating menus and long lists of contacts.

MySpace, iTunes and other online services are changing the way independent musicians connect with their fans, according to an interesting New York Times article. [via Kottke]

AT&T: No pre-sales for iPhone

According to a leaked AT&T internal document, there will be no pre-sales of the iPhone. The document, which is a “sales brief” intended to educate employees, lists current and launch plans for the device. The brief clearly states, “Sales for the iPhone will be on a first come, first served basis. No wait list of names will be taken and NO pre-selling is allowed.” The document also says that exact release dates should not be given to customers, and that the prices are to be given as $499 for the 4GB and $599 for the 8GB model, which may indicate that the iPhone will not be subsidized. [via Business 2.0]

Kensington intros QuickSeek iPod FM transmitter

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Kensington has introduced its latest iPod FM transmitter—the QuickSeek. Using ClearFM technology, the device “finds the clearest FM station for transmitting iPod tunes through a radio within seconds, improving transmission quality and convenience. This way, iPod users can enjoy their music, with crisp, clear sound, while eliminating the time-consuming tuning often needed to play an iPod through an FM radio.” The QuickSeek sports a detachable car charger cable and three station pre-sets. It sells for $90.

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